Premier League sides had another opportunity to get points on the board early as we entered gameweek 2. The weekend kicked off with what could be an early season six-pointer as Cardiff City hosted Newcastle United, after both sides tasted defeat in their season openers. The late game on Saturday saw Arsenal travel to Chelsea in a match between sides that had mixed outcomes on the opening day. Sunday saw Brighton look to bounce back from defeat, but it wouldn’t be easy as they hosted Manchester United. Anyway, here’s the FPL Updates Gameweek 2 Review…
Neil Etheridge – Fans across the league may have been forgiven for writing off Cardiff City this season. With a relatively low budget and a team with minimal Premier League experience the bookies have them favourites for the drop. However, no Neil Warnock side will go down without a fight and they picked up their first point of the Premier League season in a hard-fought draw with another side set to struggle, Newcastle United. The Magpies had a chance to take all three points in injury time however Neil Etheridge stood strong to deny Kenedy from the spot deep into injury time.
Steve Cook – There’s no doubt that Eddie Howe’s AFC Bournemouth side were underdogs as they headed into their clash with West Ham United at the Olympic Stadium. The Hammers did take the lead from the spot when Marko Arnautovic converted after Javier Hernandez was brought down by Nathan Aké. However, a six-minute double would give Bournemouth their second win of the season as Callum Wilson drove through the defence to level with a brilliant goal. They hit the front when Steve Cook headed home what turned out to be the winner.
Marcos Alonso – Chelsea faced Arsenal in the game of the weekend in the Premier League. It was the West Londoners who took the lead at Stamford Bridge when a ball from deep found wing-back Marcos Alonso, who squared to Pedro who slotted home past Petr Cech. They doubled their lead soon after when another ball in behind found Alvaro Morata one on one with a defender. He beat his man to slot past Petr Cech and leave Mauricio Sarri’s side in dreamland. However, the Blues wouldn’t have it all their own way.
Ricardo Pereira – Leicester City completed the signing of Portugal international Ricardo Pereira from FC Porto in summer, and the former Nice man has impressed in his sides opening fixtures. A deflected cross deflected off Wolves defender Conor Coady and in off Matt Doherty to give the Foxes the lead on Saturday. Summer signing James Maddison doubled City’s lead on half time. The match seemed done as a contest in truth, however Jamie Vardy received his marching orders after a challenge on the afore-mentioned Doherty.
Kieron Trippier – Fulham began their away Premier League adventure at the same place they finished last campaign, Wembley Stadium. They faced a Spurs side that tasted victory at St. James’ Park on the opening day, and they hit the front when Lucas Moura bent home a brilliant strike from the edge of the area. Aleksander Mitrovic stunned the home faithful when he nodded in an equaliser. However, a stunning freekick from England hero Kieron Trippier gave Spurs the lead once more. Harry Kane got on the scoresheet late to break his infamous August duck.
Theo Walcott – Everton began the season with an away trip to newly-promoted Wolves and given most of the match was played with ten men they will likely have been happy with the point. They edged past an improved Southampton side on Saturday. The Toffees took the lead through Theo Walcott when he was on the end of a neat set-piece routine, and they quickly doubled the advantage when Walcott set up Richarlison. Danny Ings pulled one back early in the second half to set up a tense finale at Goodison, however Marco Silva will be delighted with the win.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan – At 2-0 down at Stamford Bridge Arsenal looked in trouble. However, Henrikh Mkhitaryan drove home from the edge of the area to give the Gunners hope. They then equalised as Alex Iwobi slotted home to the delight of the travelling faithful. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mikhitaryan both spurned superb chances in the first half, and they’d live to regret those misses as Marcos Alonso got on the end of an Eden Hazard cross to win it late for the blues. Unai Emery will no doubt be cursing his side’s finishing in a game that could have gone either way.
James Milner – Liverpool travelled to Selhurst Park to face Crystal Palace in a game that often produces both goals and drama. Liverpool dominated the initial stages, but Palace were in the game by all means, and fashioned the odd chance. However, Mamadou Sakho brought down Mo Salah right on half time, and James Milner converted from the spot. Aaron Wan-Bissaka was sent of late in what had been an impressive display when he brought down Salah as last man. However, Salah would then set up Sadio Mané to convert to kill the contest deep in injury time.
Pascal Gross – Brighton and Hove Albion faced Manchester United at the AMEX on Sunday and turned in a brilliant display to secure another famous win over England’s most decorated club. They took the lead when Glenn Murray flicked home superbly and doubled their lead just a minute later as Shane Duffy stabbed home after some awful defending. After Romelu Lukaku had got United back into the game Pascal Gross netted from the spot. United would get a second deep into second half stoppage time, but it was too late for José Mourinho’s side.
Sergio Aguero – It’s a first appearance in the review for Sergio Aguero this season as he netted a hat-trick against Huddersfield Town on Sunday as Manchester City fan out 6-1 winners despite a multitude of changes against the Terriers. The Argentine opened the scoring when he chipped the keeper after a great kick from Ederson. After Gabriel Jesus had added a second, Aguero pounced on an error from Ben Hamer to slot home. Aguero’s third would be a delightful flick from a superb Benjamin Mendy delivery to secure the sixth and a superb victory that leaves City top of the Premier League.
Troy Deeney – It could be argued that result of the weekend goes to Watford, who secured an excellent 3-1 win against a Burnley side that are notoriously strong at Turf Moor. They took the lead after a couple of minutes when Andre Gray fired in a brilliant volley against his former club. However, James Tarkowski levelled for the Clarets just moments later. Troy Deeney netted his first goal of the season just after half time, before Will Hughes did the same to give Watford a priceless victory. Many are asking if the Hornets could be the surprise package of the season.
Written by Ryan Nevin (@RNevin7)